This was an oral question asked in Parliament last year by Angie Warren-Clark (Labour MP) to the Minister of Health as per the parliament.nz website:
Hon. Dr DAVID CLARK (Minister of Health): All New Zealanders have the right to expect their tap water to be safe to drink. We know from the experience in Havelock North in 2016, where 5,000 people got sick, that, unfortunately, this has not always been the case. Yesterday, the local government Minister and I were pleased to announce approval for a dedicated water regulator to ensure we can have confidence in the safety of our drinking water. This was one of the key recommendations of the Havelock North Drinking Water Inquiry Stage 2 report.
Angie Warren-Clark: How will a dedicated water regulator prevent outbreaks of water-borne disease, like the Havelock North outbreak, from happening again?
Hon. Dr DAVID CLARK: For too long, drinking-water quality and safety has been covered by a number of pieces of legislation, and responsibilities have been split between a number of agencies. As a result, oversight has been fractured and ineffective. The new regulator will ensure coherent oversight of the entire drinking-water supply system. They will also ensure compliance with standards through monitoring and enforcement. Furthermore, they will provide leadership to the sector; help build capability; provide information, advice, and education; and report on the performance of the sector.
Angie Warren-Clark: What powers will the new water regulator have?
Hon. Dr DAVID CLARK: The new water regulator will have the final say on drinking water. Its powers will be set out in the new water services bill the Government intends introducing this year. This legislation will clearly set out all of the obligations to suppliers to provide safe drinking water to their communities. It’ll strengthen the compliance, monitoring, and enforcement of drinking-water regulations. This is a critical milestone for drinking-water safety in this country.
The Drinking-water Standards for New Zealand of 2005 (Revised in 2018) can be read on the Ministry of Health website here